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The First Bird: Episode 3

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Matt Kearns and the remnants of the scientific team return to a ravaged America. Modern medicine has failed to halt the spread of the flesh-consuming parasite, and humans have been forced to hide, even from each other. The infected roam the cities and suburbs of a ruined nation. But the devastating effects on human physiology are only the beginning. Something has been let l Matt Kearns and the remnants of the scientific team return to a ravaged America. Modern medicine has failed to halt the spread of the flesh-consuming parasite, and humans have been forced to hide, even from each other. The infected roam the cities and suburbs of a ruined nation. But the devastating effects on human physiology are only the beginning. Something has been let loose, something that the team were not prepared for human nature itself. Matt and Carla must make it back to the CDC headquarters, crossing the apocalyptic countryside that proves every bit as dangerous and deadly as the South American jungle. The race is on to test their eradication cure, before their world suffers the same fate as that of the giant saurians of prehistory. But there is something they don’t count on the solution has a high price. If they don’t use the cure it means the end of mankind, but what if the remedy is worse than the disease?


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Matt Kearns and the remnants of the scientific team return to a ravaged America. Modern medicine has failed to halt the spread of the flesh-consuming parasite, and humans have been forced to hide, even from each other. The infected roam the cities and suburbs of a ruined nation. But the devastating effects on human physiology are only the beginning. Something has been let l Matt Kearns and the remnants of the scientific team return to a ravaged America. Modern medicine has failed to halt the spread of the flesh-consuming parasite, and humans have been forced to hide, even from each other. The infected roam the cities and suburbs of a ruined nation. But the devastating effects on human physiology are only the beginning. Something has been let loose, something that the team were not prepared for human nature itself. Matt and Carla must make it back to the CDC headquarters, crossing the apocalyptic countryside that proves every bit as dangerous and deadly as the South American jungle. The race is on to test their eradication cure, before their world suffers the same fate as that of the giant saurians of prehistory. But there is something they don’t count on the solution has a high price. If they don’t use the cure it means the end of mankind, but what if the remedy is worse than the disease?

30 review for The First Bird: Episode 3

  1. 4 out of 5

    Geoff

    In reviews of Episode One and Two, I have said, "... the research involved ... is excellent. The science utilised ... is flawless." I still stand by those statements completely. Beck takes the theoretical and blasts it straight into reality. He must spend weeks researching even the tiniest plot point. Amazing. In Episode One, we see the result of a mission into the depths of the Amazon, and the plague one team member who escapes unwittingly brings back. In Episode Two, we follow the journey of Ma In reviews of Episode One and Two, I have said, "... the research involved ... is excellent. The science utilised ... is flawless." I still stand by those statements completely. Beck takes the theoretical and blasts it straight into reality. He must spend weeks researching even the tiniest plot point. Amazing. In Episode One, we see the result of a mission into the depths of the Amazon, and the plague one team member who escapes unwittingly brings back. In Episode Two, we follow the journey of Matt Kearns, scientist and adventurer, as he and a small party try to replicate that journey, and find themselves in a lost world. Here in Episode Three, we return with the remnants of that expedition to find the entire word, drastically changed, under attack by a minute parasite that has the ability to destroy the entire human race. The clock is ticking for humanity as Matt and the other survivors attempt to reach one of the last outposts of civilisation with a cure for the parasite, hindered on the way by the evil that lurks inside many people. In the end, we truly are our own worst enemy. Brilliant. Savage. Brutal. Compelling. Eminently readable. Beck writes for the fan of science-based blockbusters. If some of his offerings aren't turned into films soon, there is something very, very wrong. 5/5, a rating I very rarely give. Geoff Brown - president, Australian Horror Writers Association.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Brandon

    I honestly couldn't finish this one. The writing itself was well done, but the story was more than disappointing. The characters and their actions were just rediculous. You can't tell me a top CDC investigator would have absolutely no regard for contaminating her entire crew (not to mention her escort driver with no biosuit on) just because she saw a girl who reminded her of her deceased daughter. Not when the girl is clearly infested and about to spew forth millions of larva into the air any mi I honestly couldn't finish this one. The writing itself was well done, but the story was more than disappointing. The characters and their actions were just rediculous. You can't tell me a top CDC investigator would have absolutely no regard for contaminating her entire crew (not to mention her escort driver with no biosuit on) just because she saw a girl who reminded her of her deceased daughter. Not when the girl is clearly infested and about to spew forth millions of larva into the air any minute. And she's the one trying to get the possible cure back to CDC headquarters. But, just stops the armored vehicle in a hot zone, with murderous semi-infected nutcases trying to kill them, and the slightest mistake leading to contamination. That alone wouldn't have been enough to make me stop, but it came after multiple terrible decisions and unrealistic events. Also, there's no such thing as a 99 calibre rifle with a sniper scope. There is something close, a .950, but almost nobody even has them (or has even heard of them) and it's not something a crazy-eyed infected fanatic would randomly ambush arriving flights at a small airport with. The whole thing just put me in a bad mood, increasingly more flabbergasted at the way the story developed. Maybe the ending got better, but I couldn't make it that far.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Amy

    This was a great series. The ending was definitely unexpected, but perfect. The third book of the series features an apocalyptic world riddled with an ancient plague. I did find myself turning the pages in the 3rd episode, but not with nearly as much compulsion. Also, I didn't find the villain to be all that believable, but he certainly was gruesome enough. Another minor qualm I have with the 3rd book was all the Aussie-isms that the American characters used (tins, poppa, the shops, laneway, pul This was a great series. The ending was definitely unexpected, but perfect. The third book of the series features an apocalyptic world riddled with an ancient plague. I did find myself turning the pages in the 3rd episode, but not with nearly as much compulsion. Also, I didn't find the villain to be all that believable, but he certainly was gruesome enough. Another minor qualm I have with the 3rd book was all the Aussie-isms that the American characters used (tins, poppa, the shops, laneway, pulled a face, air con). Of course, knowing which phrases are absent in an English-speaking population is often more difficult than knowing which phrases are unique to that same population. All in all, I highly recommend this book to those who like tales of adventure, plague, and apocalypse.

  4. 5 out of 5

    undertherowantree

    This was definitely the weakest book that I have read from Beck. This seemed quite separate from the first and second. It was a very different take for Beck and although I liked the high gore, I do not think he played to his strengths. I was actually a little bored and it felt too rushed. This wasn't as well researched and as intricately woven as his other works and I actually missed his concluding author's note. I will read the sequel anyhow because I love everything else I have read from him. This was definitely the weakest book that I have read from Beck. This seemed quite separate from the first and second. It was a very different take for Beck and although I liked the high gore, I do not think he played to his strengths. I was actually a little bored and it felt too rushed. This wasn't as well researched and as intricately woven as his other works and I actually missed his concluding author's note. I will read the sequel anyhow because I love everything else I have read from him. I just do not think this part was necessary. The villain was also pointless and was killed too easily and quickly. That said, the ending holds promise for the next book. Was not bad, just OK.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Jennifer Brown

    Scarily possible! What would happen if you discovered an area on the earth which is so fast that has never been seen before i.e. deep Kelly’s high mountains and found time might of stood still or changed. This book says it all, as usual with this also he has a way of doing things that makes me shudder, Shiver and see what could really happen.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Chris Piehota

    An average finish for a good story line. Overall this was a good story line but the finish was kind of weak and predictable. Not terrible but not as good as it should have been to close the story out.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Radar696

    I really liked this book but towards the end of the 3rd part, I think it became a little too fast paced. The infection just ran rampart across the countryside before the end of the book.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Jacob Fischer

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Carla's stupidity was a huge drag on this book. Carla's stupidity was a huge drag on this book.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Karsyn

    I like this way better than the first two. A lot more happening in it and the end was good. Definitely more entertaining.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Jim

    FIRST BIRD:EPISODE 3 is the closing section ("episode") to a serialized novel by Greig Beck, published in 3 parts, released on June 1, July 1 and August 1, 2013. Beck is simply getting better and better. Each part must be read, in sequence, to get the full benefit. It's really all one single novel, broken up into 3 pieces. But each piece is different, and each is thrilling. The ending is a real corker. I don't want to reveal too much, especially about the final few pages which upped my already ve FIRST BIRD:EPISODE 3 is the closing section ("episode") to a serialized novel by Greig Beck, published in 3 parts, released on June 1, July 1 and August 1, 2013. Beck is simply getting better and better. Each part must be read, in sequence, to get the full benefit. It's really all one single novel, broken up into 3 pieces. But each piece is different, and each is thrilling. The ending is a real corker. I don't want to reveal too much, especially about the final few pages which upped my already very high esteem for Beck's plotting another few notches. Suffice it to say that the plague introduced in Episode 1, and its source and method of control introduced in Episode 2, both come home to a US in total chaos in Episode 3. There are stark, disturbing and gripping scenes, reminiscent of images from SWAN SONG and THE STAND but written in an extremely succinct style that permeate this last episode. The action is non-stop, and although the shortest of the 3 sections, I think this is the most terrifying. The ending is simply brilliant, and not what you will expect. That's all I've got to say, although I may post a more detailed comment with some spoilers in a day or two after I've thought about it a bit more. Greig Beck now has a string of some 5 or 8 hit novels (depending on how one counts them), and not a dud among them. He is a force to be reckoned with, and someone whose work I hope to enjoy for many years to come. Very Highly Recommended. J.M. Tepper

  11. 4 out of 5

    Teresa

    Okay, that was. Terrifying! Couldn't wait! until this morning to purchase the third episode. And I was loving it until about halfway in when the author succumbed to the formulaic mandate that says all the characters must become stupid long enough for something totally preventable to happen. It almost was sufficient to make me throw the book aside in disgust. However, in episodes 1 and 2, the monsters were horrible enough, and the effects of the pandemic were gruesome enough, and the characters wer Okay, that was. Terrifying! Couldn't wait! until this morning to purchase the third episode. And I was loving it until about halfway in when the author succumbed to the formulaic mandate that says all the characters must become stupid long enough for something totally preventable to happen. It almost was sufficient to make me throw the book aside in disgust. However, in episodes 1 and 2, the monsters were horrible enough, and the effects of the pandemic were gruesome enough, and the characters were compelling enough, that I couldn't quite make myself put the book down. I wanted to be sure that everyone got out alive, and that the aftermath was the usual happily ever after return to life as we know it. Well, that didn't happen. But the ending was even better than I expected -- a shivery deliciousness guaranteed to having me looking over my shoulder for a long while, and skirting around vegetation with a very wide perimeter. Thank you Greig Beck for a fun and fearsome read.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Priya

    The author is no amateur when it comes to shocking the readers. Episode 3 takes the combination of science fiction and horror to a whole new level. Bear in mind, this is not a book for the squeamish, faint-at-the-sight-of-blood type of people. It's horrifying, vividly gory, ruthless. That means, of course, that the book is full of action and is rather amazing. This book focuses less on the characters, whom we know quite well by now and more on the plot, the final fight against the infection that The author is no amateur when it comes to shocking the readers. Episode 3 takes the combination of science fiction and horror to a whole new level. Bear in mind, this is not a book for the squeamish, faint-at-the-sight-of-blood type of people. It's horrifying, vividly gory, ruthless. That means, of course, that the book is full of action and is rather amazing. This book focuses less on the characters, whom we know quite well by now and more on the plot, the final fight against the infection that has turned almost the whole population into savages. The author has taken a stereotype of the genre and turned it into a spectacularly original tale. The research involved is impressive and is ensures that the book stands out among the numerous science fiction stories written today. http://peskypiksipesternomi.blogspot....

  13. 5 out of 5

    David Clancy

    I loved the book. It had sharp believable characters, a plot and conflicts that kept you riveted but it was a lollypop with a sour centre. Instead of the world being saved, the world ended up being dragged back to the stone age, physically and literally. I would have at least accepted a position where man could climb back to his former glory but hints throughout prove that could not be so. A prehistoric past preserved and encapsulated was indeed a bitter pill. The finale was my only issue. Until I loved the book. It had sharp believable characters, a plot and conflicts that kept you riveted but it was a lollypop with a sour centre. Instead of the world being saved, the world ended up being dragged back to the stone age, physically and literally. I would have at least accepted a position where man could climb back to his former glory but hints throughout prove that could not be so. A prehistoric past preserved and encapsulated was indeed a bitter pill. The finale was my only issue. Until then it was brilliant. I felt like I was laying injured upon the floor with Dillon laying into me with his boot. Still thank you for writing the book which allowed me to read it. Keep going. I'm about to read Gorgon. [author: Greig BeckThe First Bird: Omnibus Edition|19139531]

  14. 5 out of 5

    RJ

    Returning to the United States is not what they expected. The infestation has grown to a pandemic in a short amount of time. Between the mites, the lack of information, and the ensuing chaos people have lost their minds. Riots, looting, and shooting are the fare of the day. Everything is shut down, nothing in and nothing out, martial law is in effect. Coming in on fumes they land at a smaller airport 200 miles short of Atlanta. Now they must make their way to CDC headquarters any way they can. T Returning to the United States is not what they expected. The infestation has grown to a pandemic in a short amount of time. Between the mites, the lack of information, and the ensuing chaos people have lost their minds. Riots, looting, and shooting are the fare of the day. Everything is shut down, nothing in and nothing out, martial law is in effect. Coming in on fumes they land at a smaller airport 200 miles short of Atlanta. Now they must make their way to CDC headquarters any way they can. The infected militia are the worst threat. The great goddess Angelina Jolie? Where did that come from? :) The book concludes with the "Red Rain" and some unexpected results.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Susan

    Episode 3 of The First Bird follows right along in the non stop action and horrors caused by the organism (mite) from the first book. This mite infestation has spread globally extremely fast. An antidote is found, but it also comes at a high price ( see review for Episode 2). I was thoroughly ( sorta) surprised at the ending. The ways of the earth are changed because of the mite infestation and also because of the antidote. I had not read anything about these novellas, nor had I read these 3 epi Episode 3 of The First Bird follows right along in the non stop action and horrors caused by the organism (mite) from the first book. This mite infestation has spread globally extremely fast. An antidote is found, but it also comes at a high price ( see review for Episode 2). I was thoroughly ( sorta) surprised at the ending. The ways of the earth are changed because of the mite infestation and also because of the antidote. I had not read anything about these novellas, nor had I read these 3 episodes BUT--I had read parts of this episode 3 before. This 'having read before' phenomenon happens often in my reading. I don't understand how that happens-- weird.

  16. 5 out of 5

    BookzBookzBookz

    The final installment of The First Bird was different from the first two but still made for one heck of a story! What's left of the venturing crew return to the United States from Brazil, worse for wear, but all is not well. The country is on a national quarantine! Citizens are grouped into three different tribes: the Healthies (the name says it all), the Invisibles (you don't see them/stay indoors), the Skinners (Infected) and the Bloomers... You will have to read to know what they are! Just kno The final installment of The First Bird was different from the first two but still made for one heck of a story! What's left of the venturing crew return to the United States from Brazil, worse for wear, but all is not well. The country is on a national quarantine! Citizens are grouped into three different tribes: the Healthies (the name says it all), the Invisibles (you don't see them/stay indoors), the Skinners (Infected) and the Bloomers... You will have to read to know what they are! Just know that it's not cool, whatsoever! Neighbor is against neighbor and there's no such thing as a Good Samaritan. You just stay away.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Any Length

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Please refer to my review of book one of this series for more information. About part three I can only add that I was a bit disappointed with the outcome of the story. I feel Greig Beck leaves nowhere to go to use Matt again in his future books. Hero survived but was left in an environment that you can't pick up on. Matt as a character has been sidelined without a reasonable come back. I found the book a little depressing in the third section as well. A bit "end of the world" type feeling. Please refer to my review of book one of this series for more information. About part three I can only add that I was a bit disappointed with the outcome of the story. I feel Greig Beck leaves nowhere to go to use Matt again in his future books. Hero survived but was left in an environment that you can't pick up on. Matt as a character has been sidelined without a reasonable come back. I found the book a little depressing in the third section as well. A bit "end of the world" type feeling.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Sandy Adams

    Engrossing adventure difficult to put down Believable characters make a good story better...I found it sad to lose so many as the trilogy progressed yet it all fit together nicely. This was book 3, and apparently the final installment. To enjoy it fully I suggest starting with episode 1 as without 1 and 2, I don't think anyone would like nor really understand this segment. Engrossing adventure difficult to put down Believable characters make a good story better...I found it sad to lose so many as the trilogy progressed yet it all fit together nicely. This was book 3, and apparently the final installment. To enjoy it fully I suggest starting with episode 1 as without 1 and 2, I don't think anyone would like nor really understand this segment.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Joe Soup

    Greig Beck Love this guys work. If you love fast pace action with twists that can come from anywhere from Jurassic to aliens and Indiana jones to omega man then you will love this guys stories . Greig Beck Love this guys work. If you love fast pace action with twists that can come from anywhere from Jurassic to aliens and Indiana jones to omega man then you will love this guys stories .

  20. 4 out of 5

    Rita McDowell

    Outstanding! While a little slow at times, this series will have you biting your nails and wanting to know what happens next! Warning you will find yourself wondering whenever you hear a cough close by! Enjoy!

  21. 5 out of 5

    Trevor

    Good end to trilogy, an enjoyable read. I was hoping Matt Kearns would have a bigger role.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Doc

    This is a novella-length episode of The First Bird. To read the full story, check out The First Bird: Omnibus Edition. I found the first book very good and from there on, it was just so so.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Rita

    Absolutely fantastic, really did not want the adventure to end. A great storyboard for a movie - what goes around comes around! I will be reading more of this authors work.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Jacqueline

    Don't know how it's planned to go from a different universe basically than the Alex hunter series to where this one is ... Don't know how it's planned to go from a different universe basically than the Alex hunter series to where this one is ...

  25. 4 out of 5

    Diane

    Well written book and fun to read. It kept me intrigued until the end. The ending was not what I expected.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Matthew

    The final instalment successfully entertains the reader whilst also scaring the living hell out of them. Terrific and terrifying!

  27. 4 out of 5

    Marzia

    not as nice a the two previous ones...

  28. 4 out of 5

    Amy Isom

    Loved it!!!! Other than using the word snorted way way too much, it was a fantastic trilogy. Fast read! Loved it! Already looking into getting more of his books!

  29. 4 out of 5

    Tom Britton

    A quick read that blend a pandemic with a zombies,nice blend of science and horror Not afraid to write the gore to The whole trilogy was great read highly recommend

  30. 4 out of 5

    Gareth Otton

    I'm not sure how I feel about this third instalment of this series. On the one hand, it is competently written and at least interesting, but on the other, I simply don't buy it. The idea that the world could fall apart to that level within just 3 days is really hard to swallow. The other issue I have with this book is the universe it takes place in. This is a spin-off of the Alex Hunter series and written before the 2 most recent Alex Hunter novels. Unless this takes place in a future timeline, I'm not sure how I feel about this third instalment of this series. On the one hand, it is competently written and at least interesting, but on the other, I simply don't buy it. The idea that the world could fall apart to that level within just 3 days is really hard to swallow. The other issue I have with this book is the universe it takes place in. This is a spin-off of the Alex Hunter series and written before the 2 most recent Alex Hunter novels. Unless this takes place in a future timeline, there has never been a hint that this sort of outbreak had taken place... and... well... I just to buy it. Finally, we have the ending. It felt rushed, almost as though it was waiting for episode 4. There was no real closure to some storylines, a lot was left up in the air and it didn't even feel like the ending of a book in a series let alone the end of a trilogy of episodes. Overall it's a 3-star outing for this one. I'm interested to see what (if anything) happens next.

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